Has Pat Robertson shot himself, and perhaps US style conservative Christian evangelism, in the foot in Latin America? The US televangelist and former presidential candidate said on his 700 Club program Monday that the US should assassinate controversial Venezualan President Hugo Chavez, who he described as wanting to spread Communism and Islamic extremism. However unpopular Chavez, who himself has accused the US of wanting to assassinate him, is in certain quarters in Latin America even many of his opponents will not appreciate an American advocating gross interference in their affairs by killing a head of state. I can't help but wonder what effect such statements will have on some folks who were tilting towards the US brand of conservative Christianity.
US officials today stated that Robertson was speaking only for himself and had no influence or involvement on US policy. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld also noted that assassination of foreign heads of state is contrary to US law.